Quiet is the basis for all Qigong practice. Quiet water is crystal clear, quiet people have clarity of mind. In modern society, the seven conditions that cause disease are: Joy, Anger, Anxiety, Excessive Pensiveness, Sadness, Fear, and Shock. Too much anger can cause loss of Yin energy, too much joy can cause loss of Yang energy. Anger makes Qi rise and affects the liver. Joy slows Qi down and affects the heart. Anxiety and Pensiveness knot Qi and affect the spleen. Sadness dissolves Qi and affects the lungs. Fear makes Qi descend and affects the kidney. Shock scatters Qi and affects the kidneys and heart.
If any of these conditions persist for a long time, it causes stagnation of Qi and blood, creating malfunction of the body and disease such as cancer, hypertension, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and so on.
Taoist and Buddhist meditations are used to preserve one’s health through movements developed over the long history of Chinese Qigong. Taoist meditation is the practice of breath control to get more energy to flow through the Xiao Zhou Tian (the yin and yang meridians) and Da Zhou Tian meridians (the twelve organ meridians), eventually to keep healthy and to have a long life. The Buddhist meditation is the practice of mind control to brighten people’s lives and to gain wisdom. So the practice of Taoist and Buddhist meditation together will result in improved physical and mental health, gaining new wisdom, and breaking off greed and foolish expectations; and finally, liberating one’s life from upset and sorrow.
In meditation, controlling the breath, the mind and the position of the body is important. Controlling the breath, practicing breathing is the way to save energy, which the ancients called "Tu Na". There are many types of controlled breathing practice: abdominal, counter abdominal, stop and close, and fetus breathing. In meditation practice, breathing will be slower, deeper, longer and more even; it seems to appear and disappear.
The highest level of breath control is fetus breathing, just like the baby in the mother’s belly. In old times, the Qigong Masters had these comments about breathing practice: "Breathing as a baby in mother’s belly, heart as sincere as a baby; the Yin and Yang are in balance; the heavens and earth are one. Breathing out gently, breathing in unbrokenly… by and by, energy manifestations will appear in the third eye (upper dantian). Fetus breathing restores to the original state – everything returns to the root, the universe." This is the ancient meditation procedure; the physical body is totally relaxed and peaceful, making the body and spirit completely harmonious.
Modern scientific researchers point out that breathing more deeply, slowly, more evenly and longer breaths can increase the oxygen intake of the body. In turn, the cells get enough oxygen and can improve the body’s metabolism, making the cells healthier. They found with x-ray machines that when doing meditation, the diaphragm and breathing system moves 3-4 times more than normal, thus improving lung function. Also, large blood vessels and heart have been moved more, thus enhancing heart function and helping prevent hardening of the arteries. The abdominal organs also were massaged internally, thus preventing problems of the stomach, intestines, liver and gall bladder.
The "Tao De Ching", authored by Lau Tze some 2,500 years ago, said, "make the mind as sincere as a baby". This means the practice of meditation can help us achieve the highest level of anything, such as kindness, unselfishness, equality, generosity, and spiritual attainment. It can help the bad Qi to exit the body and keep good health. It can also help the essence of energy (Qi) enter the body to build up the organs. Proper breathing helps a person to avoid diseases, vexation, anxiety and weakness. If the energy increases and the bad energy leaves the body, we can expect long life and total health.